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Filming a live rock band indoors with 500T: to notch or notch hack?


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#1 Christopher Curry

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Posted 14 January 2009 - 11:26 AM

Hey,

Fist time poster here. Been lurking round these parts for a few months now, thought I should step up to the plate and ask some questions. Go easy!

Soon, I'm going to be filming a live rock band, for one song, simultaneously with four different S8 cameras. I've organised crew and will be able to obtain sound straight from the desk for syncing in post-production. This will be in a modest sized indoor venue that is fit enough to host international bands. I've never been there but I'm told the capacity, sound system and lighting facilities are by no means lacking. I'll be inspecting it first hand this Saturday night, on a gig night to see it for myself.

Here are some youtube clips for a rough idea of the location:
http://au.youtube.co...h?v=s1c73UIfGmQ
http://au.youtube.co...feature=related
http://au.youtube.co...h?v=QvTEA9ZIPE4
http://au.youtube.co...h?v=X1wU8f6NM3U
http://au.youtube.co...h?v=d7dZW11Txuw

I've done this type of project before, with the same band (not the above bands in the link), except at an inferior venue using Tri-X. Whilst I was generally pleased with the results there was still room for improvement. This was mostly due the Tri-X not being able to keep up with somewhat poor lighting arrangement.

So.....I want to give it another go except this time using Kodak Vision3 500T as it seems that this film stock will be ideal for such a situation. Using colour film indoors and catching movement in clarity will be an added bonus.

I will be using a Canon 814AZ, 518SV, 310XL and Beaulieu 1008XL.

My main concern is with over-exposure. I know I'm probably beating a dead horse by bringing up such an overdone topic here but I'm still not quite sure what to expect. I've never used negative film before and I hope to get the "best" possible film speed out this stock, with the cameras I have.

That said, from my research, using 500T, the 518SV and 1008XL should drop down to 250 as they both can read up to 400ASA Tungsten.

As for the Canon 814AZ and 310XL, they should drop down to 160 as they both read up to 250ASA Tungsten. Am I correct on this?

Now, I've read by cutting out the notch filter you can bring the speed back up to next level, against how Kodak have designed the film to be over-exposed by 1 stop and effectively cutting down the exposure.

Kind of a moot question I guess, since it's all relative to how strong the lighting is and how I set the cameras in their different positions, but is it REALLY worth my while performing notch hacks on any of these cameras? I have a particular concern with the Canon 310XL as it is very sensitive to light. How forgiving will the Vision 3 500T be?

Will I get finer grain by not using 500T to overexpose to what Kodak have set it to be stock?

Any advice?

Sorry for the lengthy post.

Edited by Christopher Curry, 14 January 2009 - 11:28 AM.

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#2 Christopher Curry

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Posted 15 January 2009 - 06:42 AM

Update: I've managed to source another Canon 814 AZ so the 310 XL will probably get bumped off the equipment list.
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#3 Anthony Schilling

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Posted 17 January 2009 - 01:10 PM

Just shoot wide open, or no less than f2 or f4 if the subjects are really bright. You won't have to worry about over exposure. I have filmed bands on 500T dozens of times in many different clubs with various light... don't think i ever over exposed, under yes.
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#4 Will Montgomery

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Posted 17 January 2009 - 07:50 PM

You're going to be happy with the new V3. I just had some come back from transfer and was pleased. Less grain in low light.

Good advice on exposure from Anthony; just open it up all the way. The 814AZ will certainly be a better lens so that's good news. I like the 310xl for portability but I have trouble getting good focus with it.
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#5 Art Leal

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Posted 17 January 2009 - 11:52 PM

Update: I've managed to source another Canon 814 AZ so the 310 XL will probably get bumped off the equipment list.


I would keep the 310XL. It's let in more light for me whenever I've used it under low lighting conditions.. See the samples listed. Although the images are visible using the 814, they showed up brighter and less grainy when I used the 310XL. My best guess is the 220 degree shutter advantage.

Never had an issue focusing with the 310, other than a few misfires when I've tried the macro setting. I just estimate the distance to the subject, set it on the lens ring, and shoot.

http://www.flickr.co...N08/3205727998/
http://www.flickr.co...N08/3205727962/
http://www.flickr.co...N08/3205727922/
http://www.flickr.co...N08/3204881319/
http://www.flickr.co...N08/3205727828/
http://www.flickr.co...N08/3205727784/
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#6 Christopher Curry

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Posted 18 January 2009 - 07:15 AM

Thanks for the replies guys.

Hmmm, I did have very good results with the 310XL on my last project with Tri-X. The cameras were always in a static position on tripods with minimal movement and zooming, if any zooming at all. Didn't really have too much trouble with focusing. The main subject from that angle was the bassist and singer, from about 7 feet away.

The main quibble I have with the 310XL is that it's only 18 fps, not the greatest rate for syncing up audio. Places also seem to charge more sometimes to set up 18 fps telecine.

Art, those pictures do demonstrate better contrast and grain with the 310XL over the 814XL. Thanks for sharing them. I'm guessing none of the cartridges were hacked?
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#7 Art Leal

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Posted 18 January 2009 - 08:40 AM

That's correct, none were hacked. I only hack them if I use them for outdoor daylight, but I just shot a few rolls in outdoor daylight I'm getting back this week which were not hacked, and no daylight filter. I'm curious to see how they correct in post.

You're right about the 18fps limitation. Didn't think of it since I don't do much 24fps shooting, which I probably should.
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#8 Anthony Schilling

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Posted 18 January 2009 - 11:45 AM

I would really stick to 24fps for better audio sync and smoother motion blur. You definitely don't want to mix frame rates between carts. the 814 and 500T should be fine... just ask the light person to keep the stage well lit
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